Right after you say yes to hiking, you look at your feet and wonder if it’s time to present them a great pair of boots. It’s obvious, you won’t go for hiking with an ordinary running pair, right?
And since the market is crowded with a number of boots that have been designed specifically for hiking, it’s worth spending some money on.
Selecting the best hiking boots is definitely not someone’s cup of tea. So we promises you to reduce your confusion.
Here, you will get to meet with 10 best hiking boots that have been reviewed just to let you know their existence and the reasons of being the best.
Merrell Men’s Moab 2 Vent Mid
The second version of Moab which is short for Mother of all boots can be your favorite hiking boot by Merrell.
The pair comes with a blend of suede leather and mesh so that it can give the highest quality and durability you want for hiking. The leather might give you a warmth but since it has mesh, your feet will get space to breathe.
For the outsole, the brand has used Vibram rubber that offers both power and stability right on the trail. Not just that, your feet will also witness a great traction while connecting the shoe with the earth.
Speaking more of traction, Moab 2 has 5mm lug depth that offers an optimum grip as well as stability even on even surface with its aggressive lug pattern.
You will also have removable insole that is well-cushioned enough to give you comfort and support.
Moreover, the brand has also added a rubber toe cap that protects the boot as well as extends the life of wear.
Plus, it also comes with molded nylon arch shank that provides your feet with enough flexibility so that it can create a natural movement in your foot. Not just that, you will also get a lot of support that will further help in easing some stress in your arch.
Not just that, the brand has incorporated a blend of Fit Eco and EVA foam into the foot bed to provide extra zonal arch and heel support.
The tongue comes with closed cell foam that does not only offer cushioning but also helps in keeping the debris and moisture at bay.
Speaking more of the cushion, you will also have Merrell air cushion coming in the heel that works to absorb impact while adding stability.
You will also have lace up system for a snug fit. Although, you might hate the quality of the lace but you can have it changed.
- Material offers durability and quality.
- Vibram rubber for great traction.
- Mesh for enough ventilation.
- 5mm lug depth offers traction and stability.
- Toe cap offers protection as well as durability.
- Well-cushioned insole.
- Molded nylon arch shank offers flexibility.
- Closed cell foam keeps moisture and debris at bay.
- Air cushion offers shock absorption.
- Low quality lace.
- Your feet might feel a little hot.
Altra AFM1855F Men’s Lone Peak 4
Running out of choices? Then have a look at this Lone Peak 4 which happens to be the best hiking boots by Altra.
The shoe comes with foot-shape toe box that lets your toes relax and spread out independently to give your feet both stability and comfort during uphill climb and downhill descent.
You will also have Zero drop technology that helps in promoting appropriate and low-impact form by placing your heel plus forefoot the same distance from the pavement.
It also comes equipped with Abound Cushioning technology which is an energy-return compound that adds a bounce to each step as well as reduces impact while sitting under the foot directly.
To add more, the shoe features 4-point Gaitertrap that basically refers to hook and loop tabs that help in preventing debris from building up below the shoe by allowing strapless gaiter attachment.
Not just that, you will also have their Trailclaw technology where the brand has placed the canted lugs below the metatarsals strategically so that they can offer traction at toe off.
Speaking of traction, the shoe has used rubber outsole so that it can offer you grip even in uneven terrain. Not just that, you will also love its insane mix of aggressive outsole and solid upper that makes the shoe well-built and high quality.
To add more, the brand incorporated Maxtrac technology that works to eat up challenging surface with a fine combo of grip, durability and traction like a pro.
For the midsole, Altra used Stoneguard tech by sandwiching Abound and EVA foam to deliver flexibility and protection from difficult terrain so that each your stride becomes smooth and stable.
Overall the boot is able to live up to your expectation. But still, there are two little cons. One of them highlights that the shoe will require slightly break in period while the other claims it to be a little bulky. Other than that, this can make a great pick.
- Foot-shape toe box for flexibility.
- Zero drop for shock absorption.
- Abound Cushioning for adding bounce to each step.
- 4-point Gaitertrap for preventing debris buildup.
- Trailclaw for offering traction.
- Maxtrac for providing grip, durability and traction.
- Stoneguard for delivering flexibility and protection.
- Might be a bit bulky.
- Requires a slight break-in period.
Zamberlan Men’s 996 Vioz GT
Want some solid guy? Then you will need none but this best hiking boots by the brand Zamberlan.
996 Vioz GThas been designed with sleek Zamberlan Hydrobloc leather that provides your feet with supple and flexible fit while giving a crisp look to the shoe.
The brand has infused Gore-Tex lining technology into the shoe that helps in keeping your feet dry while delivering enough breathability so that your feet feel cool all through your hike.
To add more, the shoe features Gore-Tex performance comfort membrane that works to give your feet supreme protection as well as ventilation.
Not just that, it also comes with Micro-tex wicking nylon collar lining that controls excessive moisture so that it can keep your feet dry.
You will also love the lug pattern that has been designed in such so that you can get to enjoy maximum traction over different range of terrains. You must also thank Zamberlan Vibram for rubber outsole that also serves the same purpose to give you maximum benefit. Moreover, the shoe comes with wide lugs so that you can remove debris easily.
Moreover, Vioz GT is equipped with Zamberlan Flex System that lets your pair flex forward comfortably without losing lateral support.
However, you might find the toe box a little small which can play as a minor con. Another issue with the shoe is that it tends to squeak with every step.
- Zamberlan Hydrobloc leather offers durability.
- Gore-Tex lining technology offers ventilation.
- Gore-Tex performance comfort membrane for protection.
- Micro-tex wicking nylon collar lining for keeping your feet dry.
- Zamberlan Vibram outsole offers great traction.
- Zamberlan Flex System offers flexibility.
- Wide lugs for easy dirt removal.
- Smaller toe box.
- Might squeak a lot.
Salomon Men’s Quest 4d 3 GTX
You can end your quest to get the best hiking boots with this great Quest 4d 3 GTX by the brand Salomon.
Coming in a fine blend of leather and synthetic, the shoe promises to be durable and high quality in the long run.
The big plus is that the shoe comes with fourth generation of Speed-cross lug pattern that makes the shoe eat up soft as well as technical surface.
You will also love the way 4d 3 GTX involves a fine combo of Quicklace and Sensifit. While the Quiclace provides you with quick and easy adjustment of the laces so that you never have a loose shoe on your feet, the Sensifit makes sure that it improves your performance while wrapping the foot with a snug and secure fit.
Speaking more of security, the shoe also comes with Endofit design in its inner sleeve that wraps your foot very snugly so that it stays in place while you move.
Plus the shoe features Gore-Tex technology that makes the shoe weatherproof so that you can run in different season. Although, the presence of weatherproof is evident, but the shoe performs poor when it comes to waterproofing.
However, cushioning is great in this shoe, thanks to advanced chassis for which you can enjoy the comfort while it connects to the sole directly for your heels stabilization.
The shoe also comes with contagrip so that it can offer traction even over wet surface. Talking about traction, its rubber outsole will also be there that gives the same benefit.
Just like the previous one, some of you will also find the toe grip area of this shoe small which can be a bit inconvenient for you. But excluding these cons, you will find the pair perfect for hiking.
- Material offers durability and high quality.
- Speed-cross lug pattern to eat up technical terrain.
- Quiclace for easy lace adjustment.
- Sensifit for offering snug fit.
- Endofit offers security.
- Advanced chassis offers cushioning.
- Rubber outsole for great traction.
- Contagrip for traction in wet terrain.
- Smaller toe area.
- Waterproof is absent.
Salomon Men’s X Ultra 3 Mid GTX
Ultra 3 Mid GTX by Salomon is a kind of boot that has got both the looks and functioning.
Just like the previous one, it too comes with leather and synthetic making it a very durable product to have.
Besides, the shoe has been engineered to work with reinforced top arm of the sensifit that makes sure it helps in enhancing its performance while it wraps around the foot to give a secure and snug fit. Not just that, it also holds your foot so comfortably in place that you will love every moment of adventure in your hiking.
To add more, there is Advanced Chasis that is covered by foam to provide you with comfort, cushioning and heel stabilization while connecting to the sole directly.
The presence of Gore-Tex will also benefit you with its weatherproof factor so you can use it in different season.
Moreover, the brand has placed two different types of rubber strategically on the sole so that it can offer extra traction as well as stability. You will find a different patterned area on the heel that grasps the surface so aggressively so that it provides you more control while you are moving at a clip.
Not just that, the shoe comprises of protective heel cap to give you protection as well as durability.
When it comes to foot bed sock liner, it has been equipped well with EVA foam to give you cushioning as well as comfort.
There is a lace up system that tends to come loose. But, if you double knot it, you can get rid of such inconvenience easily.
The only issue with the shoe is that the tongue feels to thick that can make you feel uncomfortable initially. Otherwise, this is a perfect pair for hiking.
- Material offers durability and high quality.
- Sensifit for offering snug fit.
- Advanced chassis offers cushioning.
- Two types of rubber outsole for great traction.
- Gore-Tex offers weatherproof.
- Different patterned area on the heel for aggressive traction.
- Protective heel cap for protection and durability.
- Well cushioned sock liner.
- Lace might come out loose.
- Tongue feels too thick.
Danner Men’s Mountain 600
The first thing about Mountain 600 which will attract you is its 4.5 inch height that does not only add a charm to its look but also makes it different than many hiking boot.
For the midsole, the brand has used Vibram SPE that is short for Specialized Performance Elastomer. It is stated to be a technical compound that has been designed to offer comfort and flexibility. To add more, such material is created with a different kind of co-polymer made up of a mix of synthetic rubber and EVA. As a result, you will have improved cushioning, resilience and durability with reducing the weight.
When it comes to its outsole, Danner has incorporated Vibram Fuga Outsole to attain an ideal balance between traction and flexibility. The flex lines of the outsole and the SPE midsole let your foot extend to a broader surface so that you can enjoy enough freedom of movement.
Not just that, the shoe also features a unique lug pattern that grabs the earth at different angles, so traction has been guaranteed.
Moreover, the outsole has also been injected with Megagrip rubber so that you can witness traction on both wet and dry surface.
The shoe has been constructed with suede upper that makes it waterproof as well as weatherproof. You will also find it coming with lacing system that is expected to be high quality but alas gives you disappointment.
However, the shoe comes with Orthoclase foot bed and nylon shank to offer well cushioning as well as flexibility.
Before making a purchase, you must check the sizing of the shoe as well as your foot to get an ideal pair. It has been stated by many of the users that the pair does not run true to its size.
- Vibram SPE midsole for comfort and flexibility.
- Vibram Fuga Outsole for traction.
- Flex lines of the outsole for freedom of feet movement.
- Megagrip rubber for traction on wet and dry surface.
- Suede upper makes it waterproof.
- Orthoclase foot bed is well-cushioned.
- Low quality lace.
- Not true to size.
Columbia Men’s Newton Ridge Plus II
Ever met a pair that will instantly trigger you to catch it right away after you find it? Nope? Then you haven’t met this Newton Ridge Plus II by the brand Columbia.
It comes with a fine mix of leather, suede and mesh where the leather works to offer durability, suede works to makes it waterproof and mesh works to offer breathability. So, you will have three different benefits from three materials.
The best part of the shoe is that it comes with Techlite technology in its midsole to provide you with high energy return, long-lasting comfort as well as cushioning.
You will also enjoy its advanced traction that is provided by its Omni-grip rubber material making your movement absolutely slip-free.
For better fitment, the shoe will have lace up closure so that you can get the benefit of adjustable and secure fit.
Although, the shoe is stated to have mesh material for offering breathability, but some of the users still complained about it making their feet sweat. So, you might feel the lack of ventilation there.
Speaking of drawback, you might also feel the necessity of arch support since the shoe lack that. However, the cushioned insole fixes that issue though.
- Leather for durability.
- Suede for waterproof.
- Mesh for breathability.
- Techlite midsole for cushioning plus high energy return.
- Omni-grip rubber for traction.
- Offers secure and snug fit.
- Requires more breathability.
- Requires more arch support.
Scarpa Men’s Zodiac Plus Gtx
Zodiac Plus GTX deserves BIG round of applause for being the best hiking boots by the brand Scarpa.
It comes with a fine mix of textile and leather to make it last longer. Thus, durability is hundred percent ensured.
To talk about its technology, you will have Gore-Tex that will not only give protection to your feet but also keep them cool and dry.
The shoe has also been designed with Sock-Fit DV construction that helps in reducing bulk and creating a secure fit for better fitment.
There is also rubber rand that has been added to offer protection as well as performance.
Speaking of the material, the rubber has also been used for outsole to provide your feet with traction over different terrain.
You will also love its asymmetric lace system that helps a lot in ensuring snug fit so that you can hike confidently.
Plus for the midsole, the brand has used Polyurethane as well as three different densities to EVA foam to make the shoe well-cushioned while optimizing weight.
Zodiac does not only offer waterproof and breathable protection but also provide you with low-profile performance fit.
However, some of the users got bad blisters on their heel so you might want some more support and cushioning from the shoe. Not just that, you might also want the heel of the shoe to be more thicker to get the comfort from the pair.
- Materials offer durability.
- Gore-Tex offers great ventilation.
- Sock-Fit DV construction for snug and secure fit.
- Asymmetric lacing system for better fitment.
- Rubber rand offers protection.
- Well-cushioned midsole.
- Might give you blisters on your heel.
- Cushioning should be more thick.
KEEN Men’s Targhee II Mid
Are you keen to know the best hiking boots by KEEN? Then take a look at this Targhee II Mid that can meet your expectations.
The upper has been constructed with Nubuck leather that does not only make the shoe durable but waterproof as well. Basically, you will have low-profile upper that comes with ghillie lacing system so that you can enjoy a comfortable and secure fit. Albeit they might run half a size small, but you can go half a size up for better fitment.
Both the tongue and the collar has been made well-padded to give you enough comfort you want.
Moreover, the brand has used KEEN.DRY breathable membrane that makes the shoe waterproof as well as breathable so that your feet can feel cool and dry.
When it comes to traction, you will also get satisfaction with the quality and performance of the rubber outsole. Speaking more of the outsole, you will love its aggressive pattern with 4mm multidirectional lugs so that it can bite into the ground regardless of the type of pavement to offer improved traction.
The leather lining is breathable so that it can let the air flow. However, as for the insole, you might get disappointed with its thinness.
You will also have ESS shank that offers lightweight and rigid stability in the mid foot for a secured ride.
- Nubuck leather for durability and waterproofing.
- Ghillie lacing for secure fit.
- Well-cushioned tongue and the collar.
- DRY breathable membrane for breathability and waterproofing.
- Aggressive outsole pattern for traction.
- Multidirectional lugs for improved traction.
- Leather lining is breathable.
- Insole is a little thin.
- Short length, so you must grab half a size up for better fitment.
Lowa Mens Renegade Gore-Tex
Let these best hiking boots by Lowa charm you with its great performance when you are on your hike.
Being a Nubuck boot, flexibility and lightness has been guaranteed well by Lowa where you will love the quality of the material as well.
It has used Gore-tex technology to make it waterproof and breathable so that your shoe can resist water while letting the air flow to make your feet cool and dry.
For the midsole, it comes with Polyurethane Monowrap Frame to provide your feet with excellent shock absorption while being very durable and ecofriendly.
The insole that come with it is great as well and happens to be more durable than you think. In essence, you will have perforated insole that comes with Climate Control System.
For the traction, the brand has used Vibram rubber outsole so that the shoe stays stuck to the ground for offering its grip.
To add more, you will also get nylon shank that will not only offer stability but also provides you with protection.
The only weak link of the shoe is that its arch support. The shoe fails to offer enough arch support which can upset you a little. But since you will be having most of the benefits, it will be easier for you to forget that.
- Nubuck for flexibility and lightness.
- Gore-tex technology for breathability and waterproofing.
- Polyurethane Monowrap Frame for shock absorption.
- Vibram rubber outsole for traction.
- Nylon shank for protection.
- Arch support is not great
Your Hiking Boot Buying Guide
If your pair of hiking boots would have weighed the same as your regular shoes, the it would have been a miracle. But sadly, majority of the hiking boots come with almost all the benefits at the expense of weight. So, they will be bulky as well as heavy to wear.
Albeit, lighter does not always mean better. But we still will advise you to give more emphasis on other features than the weight. If you think you have gotten a couple of options that have all the benefit, then you can go for the one that will be lighter among them.
Such kinds of boot should provide a snug fit, neither too tight nor too loose. However, they should also give your feet a room so that your toes can move. Make sure you try them with the socks so that you can determine the fit.
It will be great if you have the length and width of your foot and length of your arch measured to know your size. You can measure them using a device or you can measure it with the help of a specialist at a store.
If you happen to wear orthotics, you should also bring them since they play a great role in the fitment of the boot.
If you want to get true ankle support, you will need such a boot that will be high top while being laced around your ankles tightly. There are many of the boots that lack such support, so you will need to go through a lot of reviews that include positive remarks regarding the support by the users.
Heel to toe drop:
There are many boots that basically come with evident drop in height from heel to toe so that it can help in increasing the efficiency of your running. Some of the footwear feature zero drop that refer to your foot to be the same distance off the pavement from heel to toe. As a result, it tends to put lesser stress on your body while hiking.
If your pair has a bad lacing system, then the pair is likely to come out loose letting you have to readjust the shoe continuously during the hike. If the culprit is just the lace here, then it should not be a matter of concern since you have get a replacement that comes in better quality. But if the system is the culprit here which fails to hold your foot properly then there is something wrong with the shoe itself. However, you can avoid system like single pull speed lace system since it does not offer customized fit. Albeit such design is convenient but it can lead to discomfort if you are planning to hike for longer miles.
There are many boots that come up with advanced lacing system which involve locking hooks close to the bend at the ankle. These hooks help in keeping the laces in place while providing you with added comfort and performance.
The material used in the upper of boot is a fabric which connects to the outsole and associates directly with the durability, breathability and the waterproofing of the boot. There are different materials that have been used when it comes to the upper:
- Synthetic Nylon and Mesh: Woven synthetic nylon and mesh nylon are the materials that help in offering ventilation. Although, they will not be that much durable and wear out soon due to stitching outside the footwear, however, they do a great job at reducing weight. Plus, such material also helps in absorbing moisture much quicker than other materials. So, if breathability is your pick, then you can go with such material that will keep your feet cool and dry.
- Nubuck and Suede leather: Such materials comprise of full grain leather. However, they come with a brushed finish giving you a suede like feel. The materials result in much more flexible and lighter than full leather boots, but you will get disappointed at the durability of the material. However, it can last longer than nylon mesh inserts and for this reason the brand blends the Nubuck material with mesh to give the boot extra solidity.
- Full grain Leather: Used mostly on the tough heavyweight boots. Such material will neither be light nor be breathable but you will find them amazingly solid and waterproof. However, leather will require some maintenance if you want to keep the boots in good shape.
- Waterproof membranes: Boots that come with waterproof membrane feature uppers that have been made water resistant to keep your feet dry in wet weather. Although, this feature will come at the expense of breathability so your feet might feel hot wearing such boots on hot summer days.
Carrying a decent amount of weight that puts a lot of stress on your foot is common while wearing a pair of hiking boots. This is where the role of midsole comes to play. It combines with outsole and becomes a great shock absorber from impacts to provide your feet with an extra layer of protection from obstacles. You will find different range of midsole starting from thin to stiff to substantial. Midsole basically comes equipped with EVA foam or Polyurethane to make the shoe well-cushioned. However, a great midsole can provide a big impact on long-term comfort
- EVA: Most of the light to mid-weight hiking boots come with EVA midsole. This is a kind of cushy soft foam that takes out the sting of your heel while being incredibly light. However, you should not treat all the EVA equally. There are proprietary varieties that can come in the range from softer foam to mildly stiffer foam. If you are planning to go for hike on tougher terrain, then you can go with supportive and firm midsole which not be very cushioning. Since softer midsole is likely to wear out after a couple of uses, so you will require a kind of EVA material that will be high in quality as well as durable.
- Polyurethane: If your priority is to insulate your feet from impacts, then you will need midsole that uses polyurethane. This material is much more durable than EVA but it will not be very much cushy. However, PU happens to handle a heavy load greatly as well. Moreover, they also help in keeping their shape longer while not being prone to compressing.
Do you know why you wish to upgrade to a real hiking boot from an ordinary cross trainer. It’s because you will be witnessing a kind of traction that you won’t get in ordinary pairs. Hiking boots come with better traction with better power. Just like Gore-tex technology rules for offering water resistance, you will have Vibram rubber for outsole that rules the market for offering better traction. Moreover, there are many models that also come with wider lug patterns below the shoe for providing severe traction on mud as well as over wet terrain. You will also be able to remove dirt and debris out of these wider lug patterns easily.
When you get a flat insole, it becomes a pain to fit the shoe properly. However, there are many brands that incorporate removable insole so that you can get the option to remove the stock insoles easily and replace it with a better one that will go well with the size and shape of your foot. However, you can still feel satisfied with the insole that comes with the shoes, but most of them are likely to wear out quick. Hence, it is essential that you buy a replacement beforehand,
Toe caps cover the front of a lot of hiking footwear. They come in thicker pieces of rubber that help in keeping your toes in one piece so that it can protect your toes from kicking a rock. Such feature also offers protection while wrapping the front of your foot completely. Since it adds extra weight, there are many brands that do not include toe protection to reduce the weight.
Frequently Asked Questions:
Q: Which of the hiking boots come with great arch support?
A: Majority of the hiking boots are constructed with neutral arches. If you want to get right arch support, then you will need to select right insole. Albeit, the insole that comes with the boots works fine, but since many of them wear out quick, you will need to have a replacement that will go well with the size and shape of your foot. If you want to get the right one, it will be great if you can visit a footwear expert at any of the nearby stores. S/He will help in measuring your arch length as well as the height so that you get a proper insole for right arch support.
Q: How can I ensure proper fit for hiking boot?
A: To ensure getting a proper fit, you must grab a size that feels right for your feet even when you wear the pair with your socks, orthotics and insoles. Such add-ons take extra room up in your boot while changing the feel of the fitment. Hence, do not purchase boots without them.
Before making a purchase, we would advise you to try at least a number of boots. Because, they feel more comfortable when they contain more padding. After you try out a number of shoes and take a test in the store, you will get better ideal that what kind of boots will fit snugly on your feet.
Q: When to use hiking shoes and when to use hiking boots?
A: Hiking shoes are great for days hikes and established level paths. And Hiking boots are great for rough and uneven path and for weak ankles.
Q: Are all the boots waterproof?
A: No, all the boots do not come waterproofed. If you buy a pair that used leather material, you can enjoy the benefit of waterproof right out of the box. But you can make the boots waterproof just by adding waterproof linings to the boot. However, waterproofing makes the leather much more comfortable, softer and stretchable.
Out of multiple boots, we have found this 10 pair to be much eligible for being the best hiking boots. They do not only offer durability but also provide you with enough performance to satiate you. So, if you are planning to get a pair, we can say that this list will be of a great help!